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Cambridge Cardiovascular

£8M RCUK award for Cambridge-led public health research in Bangladesh

Research Councils UK has awarded a collaboration led by Cambridge researchers £8.1M as part of the Global Challenges Research Fund to launch the “CAPABLE” initiative.
CAPABLE (Cambridge Programme to Assist Bangladesh in Lifestyle and Environmental risk reduction) will recruit 100,000 people from landscapes ranging from the green paddy fields of rural Bangladesh to the slums of the densest city in the world – Dhaka. From their data, a team with engineers, sociologists, chemists, biologists, and health researchers will strive to understand how the risk factors interact - and build a model that can be used to develop and test pragmatic and scalable interventions.
According to Dr Rajiv Chowdhury who is the Scientific Director of CAPABLE and will lead the initiative together with Prof John Danesh:

“Bangladesh is admired worldwide for its success in cutting child mortality and fertility rate, yet it faces an onslaught of chronic diseases that arise from an interplay of factors ranging from arsenic-contaminated drinking water to iron-deficient foods and from air pollution to the rise of the western lifestyle. We aim to help develop simple, scalable and effective solutions to control major environmental and lifestyle risk factors in Bangladesh.”
The initiative will include a substantial component of capacity-building, focusing on both individuals and organisations, with the goal of achieving sustainability and a culture where evidence is generated, understood, valued, and routinely used.
The initiative involves several departments at Cambridge University outside the Clinical School – including Chemistry, Engineering, Pathology, Sociology and Political Economy – as well as two other universities in the UK (UCL and Aberdeen University) and four partner organisations in Bangladesh:

CAPABLE builds on previous collaborations with several of these organisations, including the BRAVE and BELIEVE cohorts, led by Dr Rajiv Chowdhury, Dr Emanuele Di Angelantonio, Prof John Danesh, and others.

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